The AL Central Division has been won by the Cleveland Indians for the past three seasons, and it looks like it will be the case once again. With many teams in this division rebuilding, the Indians shouldn’t have a tough time capturing the title once again. The biggest competition will most likely be the Minnesota Twins, who are hoping to redeem themselves from last season.
1. Cleveland Indians (94-68)
For the Cleveland Indians, their window for a world-series title is now. After coming up short once again last post-season, the Indians are rewarded with a rebuilding division, as they will have it their way for the next few years with ease. The Indians have the best starting rotation in all of baseball, while also having two MVP-caliber players in Jose Ramirez and Francisco Lindor. Cleveland didn’t necessarily take the aggressive approach during the off-season, so it might be tougher to adapt a mindset for desperation in winning a world series. With that being said, the Indians will be crowned with the division title once again.
2. Minnesota Twins (87-75)
After capturing a wild-card spot in the 2017 post-season, the Minnesota Twins failed to make the playoffs, as they won only 78 games this time around. The Twins will be more desperate this season to bounce back and to finally get back into contention. The pitching is definitely a problem for the Twins this upcoming season, and their bullpen isn’t the most reliable. However, adding players like Jonathan Schoop, C.J. Cron, Marwin Gonzalez, and Nelson Cruz should bolster up the offense. Other than the Indians, the rest of the division is in the midst of a rebuild, so the Twins should be able to bounce back and make progress.
3. Chicago White Sox (72-90)
The Chicago White Sox had a horrific season last year, as they lost 100 games. The younger players like Tim Anderson and Yoan Moncada, didn’t show as much progress as the front office would have liked. Their young pitching didn’t show much progress either, and that’s definitely somewhat concerning for the team. Despite the White Sox missing out on Manny Machado, they were able to acquire some good-quality players like Jon Jay, Yonder Alonso, Alex Colome, Kelvin Herrera, and Ivan Nova. The White Sox are nowhere near contending, however, they should be able to capture third place in the division comfortably.
4. Kansas City Royals (64-98)
Ever since the Kansas City Royals won their World Series Championship in 2015, this team has hit rock-bottom ever since. They didn’t have many bright spots, but one bright spot in particular included Adalberto Mondesi, as he broke out during the second half of the season, posting an .835 OPS while hitting 11 homers in 54 games. From a financial perspective, the Royals did what they could. They added some solid pieces like Billy Hamilton, Chris Owings, Homer Bailey, and Martin Maldonado. The Royals did a decent job picking up quality players despite half their payroll being used up by Alex Gordon and Ian Kennedy.
5. Detroit Tigers (62-100)
Finally in last place in the AL Central Division are the Detroit Tigers. In all reality, it could’ve been the Kansas City Royals, but just looking from a talent perspective, both the White Sox and Royals fair better than the Tigers. Like Kansas City and Chicago, Detroit was able to acquire some solid players like Josh Harrison, Jordy Mercer, Tyson Ross, and Matt Moore. Those additions could come in handy for possible trades, so it’s essential for the Tigers’ front office to make the right move for the right cost. Other than that, they’re in another rebuilding season and will most likely be at the bottom of the division, if not the Royals.